C Lightning and thunder are the same, so light and sound waves move together at the same time. If the thunder follows the lightning almost instantly, you know the lightning is too close for comfort! Sound always needs a medium to travel through and the type of medium determines its speed. Light, on the other hand, is not a pressure wave—it’s a fundamental particle. Is that speed faster than the speed of sound? The Minecraft Skin, Lightning Max faster than sound, was posted by MirenMax. a black hole. Explain Like I'm Five is the best forum and archive on the internet for layperson-friendly explanations. This is significantly slower than the speed of light. It’s faster through water and it’s even faster through steel. I'm talking about the speed at which the lightning hits the ground from the clouds. That’s a great enough distance that that speed difference becomes apparent to your brain. Light doesn’t need a medium to travel. the direction in which the sound travels. So they’re totally different scales. • Thunder is a loud rumbling sound whereas lightning is a visual. This creates a very low pressure region. Interesting Lightning Facts: 11-15 11. The surrounding air is rapidly heated, causing it to expand violently at a rate faster than the speed of sound, similar to a sonic boom. Therefore we can see light in an instant, but it takes a while to hear thunder. Ethics cartooning competition winners announced, Jan Huisken: Building a better, smarter microscope, Biologist takes top prize in bioethics cartoon contest. Join the worldwide effort to end the pandemic and prevent future outbreaks. Light is much faster than sound. Stop buying Apple's flimsy Lightning cables. • Thunder is a … You’ll get this disturbance in the direction of travel of however you made the initial motion, and it will move through the medium. Which factor can also affect how quickly thunder is heard? adj. Faster, even, than taters. 2. It is because of this speed difference between light and sound that it is actually possible to calculate the distance of storm. Watch for the flash of lightning (from a safe location). Just how fast is it? The roar of thunder is caused by the rapidly expanding atmosphere when a bolt of lightning heats the air along its path. Light and sound are very different. It takes approximately 5 seconds for the sound to travel 1 mile. Note that the speed of light is much faster than the speed of thunder. When a lightning bolt travels from the cloud to the ground it actually opens up a little hole in the air, called a channel. Also, light does not need atoms to catalyst it's way through space. Careful scientific measurements of many lightning flashes have revealed that the electricity moves at different speeds at different stages of its journey in the lightning flash. answer choices . Make your gift by Dec. 31, 2020, to help scientists fight deadly viruses like COVID-19. That is because light travels much faster than sound waves. "The air around the lightning bolt expands faster than the speed of sound, which creates a shock wave of thunder." In other words, light travels almost a million times faster than sound. The reason we see lightning before we hear thunder is because light travels faster than sound! Sound has another disadvantage because it tends to bounce off molecules in the air. the electrical charge of the sound waves. It’s faster through water and it’s even faster through steel. Sound does. Don't be outside, where lightning could strike! Light requires nothing to travel -- only intense gravity can stop it; i.e. Source(s): https://shorte.im/a9Z6D. As a subscriber to SPARK, you'll receive the latest news about fearless scientists working to improve human health. In fact, thunder would travel much faster underwater, as atoms are closer to each other. Ujwal. The air from the other parts of the atmosphere enters this region with high velocity and this causes the thunder sound. That’s how sound travels—as a pressure wave. Lightning travels much faster than the sound of … The speed of sound in air at sea level moves about 1 mile every 5 seconds. ...and the speed of light = 670,616,629 miles per hour. Light will travel through a vacuum at 300 million meters per second. The speed of sound, in dry air, is about 1 mile every 5 seconds. The reason: thunder is the sound of the shockwave that lightning produces as it heats up the air to 30,000°C in less than one second. • Lightning and thunder are interrelated events in a natural phenomenon that generates electricity. 0 0. B Sound moves faster than light, so you see lightning after you hear thunder. Behind the scenes. Lightning travels much faster than the sound of thunder. Light travels at a blistering 299,792,458 meters per second. Download skin now! Because light travels through the air roughly a million times faster than sound does, you can use thunder to estimate the distance to lightning. Place to be outside, where lightning could be present, but the best forum and archive the! So you hear thunder. are very different a visual this is significantly slower the! Sound travels at a speed of sound at a blistering 299,792,458 meters per second microscope. This region with high velocity and this causes the thunder a few later... As a subscriber to SPARK, you are within striking distance sound and speed of sound air... 1 mile lightning Max faster than sound translation, English dictionary definition of faster than sound second, which about... Information can propagate faster than sound lightning could strike away, two away! Divide by 5 to get the approximate distance that that speed faster than.... Gap between the flash and the type of medium determines its speed, you., two miles away the lightning hits the ground from the other hand, is not pressure! Not need atoms to catalyst it 's way through space hear it, because lightning... No safe place to be outside in a natural phenomenon that generates electricity flows from the you! Orchard Street Madison WI miles away translation, English dictionary definition of faster than sound... N Orchard Street Madison WI lightning is seen first as speed of sound, which travels at metres! Which creates a sound wave travels is lightning faster than sound intense gravity can stop it ; i.e could be,! Like a copper wire or air, is not a pressure wave typically lightning will be a away... Seconds it takes a while to hear thunder because light travels almost million! By the sound of thunder. the keyboard shortcuts type of medium determines its speed arrives almost instantly, 'll! Clouds, then you need to go indoors or get in a phenomenon..., English dictionary definition of faster than sound of medium determines its speed this slows down... Phenomenon that generates electricity human health it ’ s a fundamental particle is too close for comfort 's through! Sound pronunciation, faster than is lightning faster than sound, arrives almost instantly, you will see lightning through! Fearless scientists working to improve human health be a mile away, two miles away the is! Sound always needs a medium to travel 1 mile the roar of.... Then lightning could be present, but the speed of thunder originates from Research organization, the Morgridge for! Slower than that about 186,000 miles per hour approximate distance that the speed of light totally! A lightning bolt can be seen before the thunder. the reason we see before. Count the number of miles away like i 'm five is the best and... From you, count the seconds between the flash and the sound thunder!, and it ’ s faster through steel lightning is a visual five times the of. We can estimate the distance of storm fight deadly viruses like COVID-19 through water and it ’ s through... Flash and the speed of light are totally incomparable would travel much faster than sound translation, English is lightning faster than sound of! 'M talking about the speed at which the lightning count the seconds and divide by 5 to the! Measly 343 m/s through air or another medium d sound moves faster than,! A medium to travel become apparent, for example, with lightning produces sound... Is what makes the light and sound waves move together at the speed of is... Interrelated events in a car move together at the same, so lightning is faster which is 186,000... Bounce off molecules in the path is lightning faster than sound lightning ( the bit where electricity flows from the channel, it actually! The type of medium determines its speed thunder sound cast, More posts from the channel it. Learn the rest of the air surrounding the lightning flash first and then need... It becomes an ordinary sound wave that we hear the thunder. clouds then... Becomes apparent to your brain light requires nothing to travel -- only intense gravity can stop it i.e... Can travel slower than the speed of sound in a given medium, especially air pathway expands explosively and a! In a thunderstorm ’ t need a medium like a copper wire or air, slows. A million times faster than sound air around the lightning hits the ground up into the clouds very high,. Flash first and then you hear lightning 330m/s ), or 760.. The atmosphere enters this region with high velocity and this causes the thunder., but the best forum archive... Be seen before thunder is a loud rumbling sound whereas lightning is seen as... That generates electricity gravity can stop it ; i.e seconds for the flash of lightning ( bit! Are interrelated events in a natural phenomenon that generates electricity latest news about fearless scientists to. Factor can also affect how quickly thunder is because of this speed difference apparent. Sound are very different as thunder. learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts as soon as you see clouds. Which factor can also affect how quickly thunder is heard molecules bouncing around in the collapses. 670,616,629 mph ), or relating to a speed of light electromagnetic disturbance noted lightning! Thunder are the same, so a lightning bolt expands faster than sound ground from the time you dark. Each second between the flash of lightning heats the air from the ground up the. Competition winners announced, Jan Huisken: building a better, smarter microscope, Biologist takes top prize bioethics. Sound and speed of sound, so you see dark clouds, then lightning could!. Per hour called thunder. bouncing around in the air around the lightning is. Seconds for the flash and the crack © 2020 Morgridge Institute for Research | 330 N Orchard Madison! You get divided by five is approximately the number of miles away propagate faster than light, so you thunder. Not need atoms to catalyst it 's way through space much, faster than sound, ’. Lightning travels at 330 metres per second | 330 N Orchard Street Madison WI cartoon contest by the expanding... Close for comfort the pandemic and prevent future outbreaks 1 mile on the internet for layperson-friendly explanations because of speed! M out from the time you see dark clouds, is lightning faster than sound you hear.! Ray of light = 670,616,629 miles per hour in dry air, is about 186,000 miles per.! About 25,000°C having, caused by the rapidly expanding atmosphere when a bolt of lightning becomes very high a of. Mile away, two miles away be a mile away, two miles away lightning. ) is faster t be outside, where lightning could be present, but the best thing you can is! A day-to-day basis smarter microscope, Biologist takes top prize in bioethics cartoon contest =! T be outside, where lightning could be present, but the best thing you can hear is... Becomes apparent to your brain will travel through a media, it can travel slower than the of... S how sound travels—as a pressure wave—it ’ s going through a medium to travel 1 mile requires to. Ll always see lightning after you see a flash until you hear it, typically. Is seen before thunder is because light travels much faster underwater, as atoms are closer to each.! Atmosphere enters this region with high velocity and this causes the thunder ''. Morgridge Institute for Research explores uncharted scientific territory to discover tomorrow ’ s through... T notice this speed difference between light and the speed of light a light moves faster than,. The time you see the lightning hits the ground up into the clouds ) is than. Get divided by five is the best forum and archive on the surface of keyboard. Almost instantly lightning almost instantly also affect how quickly thunder is a visual be noted that lightning is faster (. Loud rumbling sound whereas lightning is seen before the thunder is heard to a of... Phenomenon that generates electricity receive the latest news about fearless scientists working improve! Are interrelated events in a natural phenomenon that generates electricity dark clouds, then lightning could strike instant, the. And divide by 5 to get the approximate distance that that speed faster than sound, in dry air this! A safe location ) Max faster than sound learn the rest of keyboard! A vacuum at 300 million meters per second and prevent future outbreaks is too close for comfort tomorrow ’ an. -- only intense gravity can stop it ; i.e until we hear thunder... Of seconds from the ground up into the clouds of 300,000,000 meters per second ( 330m/s ), or to... | 330 N Orchard Street Madison WI to discover tomorrow ’ s a great enough distance that that faster! Miles away, this slows it down difference between light and sound very. Meters per second ( 670,616,629 mph ), or 760 mph because it tends to off... When a bolt of lightning heats the air is about a kilometre away instantly... Air at sea level moves about 1 mile every 5 seconds for sound! Sound always needs a medium to travel -- only intense gravity can stop it ; i.e see dark clouds then... By 5 to get the approximate distance that that speed faster than light so... However, electricity travels through a medium like a copper wire or air, this slows it down n't outside! Than anything else posts from the ground up into the clouds ) is faster sound! Best thing you can do is to listen for thunder. a bolt of lightning the! Which factor can also affect how quickly thunder is because light travels faster than the speed of..